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18 Nov 20 12:59
Date Joined: 18 Jul 02
| Topic/replies: 24,312 | Blogger: Angoose's blog
Australian Open start in doubt because of Covid-19 quarantine measures

There is considerable doubt as to whether January's Australian Open can be staged in Melbourne as planned.

The Tennis Channel reports that Victoria's government will not allow players to arrive in mid-December.

Tennis Australia had hoped they would be able to practise during the 14-day quarantine, before two weeks of action leading into the Australian Open.

Sources have since told BBC Sport that the state government's decision is unlikely to change.

Victoria premier Daniel Andrews said the government was still working with Tennis Australia on quarantine arrangements.

"We're confident that we'll finish up with an Australian Open," he said. "Whether [players] need to be here in December is the other issue.

"I don't know if that necessarily means there isn't an Australian Open."

However, players may be allowed into Australia at the end of December.

This would potentially give them enough time to be ready to start the Australian Open qualifying event, as scheduled, on Tuesday, 12 January.

But that assumes players will be able to practise during their quarantine - something which is likely but has not yet been signed off by the state authorities.

It may even still be possible for players to compete during the period of quarantine, as happened in New York in the run up to the US Open.

Another possibility is that the Australian Open may be pushed back by a week or two, to allow the warm-up events to go ahead as planned.

Tournament director Craig Tiley has openly discussed the potential delaying of the tournament in the past.

There would be repercussions for the events that normally take place in early February, but the first Grand Slam of the year is likely to be the priority.

The size of the draws could also be restricted, to reduce the number of people coming into the country.

There was no qualifying at September's US Open and there was no mixed doubles competition in either New York or at the French Open which followed.

Melbourne has reported no new cases of Covid-19 for 19 days, but a recent outbreak in Adelaide has alarmed those tasked with suppressing the virus.

The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) - the governing body of the men's tour - said it was working "as hard as possible" to deliver the calendar of events.

"In discussions with Tennis Australia over the past 24 hours, we have been informed there are some new challenges around the previously planned arrival dates for players and team members," the ATP said in a note to players.
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Report Angoose November 21, 2020 5:29 PM GMT
The start of the Australian Open is set to be pushed back from January to February or March next year due to Covid-19 protocols in the country, the Herald Sun newspaper reported on Saturday.

“I am very confident we will have an Aussie Open in the early part of next year,” the report quoted Victoria premier Daniel Andrews as saying on Saturday. “The exact timing of it, the exact arrangements we put in place, they are not settled yet and as soon as they are settled, I will be more than happy to share it with you.”
Report Manoleeds January 17, 2021 9:46 PM GMT

“One player opened his door to try and have a conversation with his training mates down the hallway,” Cassar said. “The other was another gentleman who shouted Uber Eats to some other people on the floor and was praising himself for his great efforts, and opened his door to do so. It is very low level, but they are dangerous acts that we cannot tolerate.”

Dangerous acts opening a door?

How can they take part after 14 days of house arrest?
Report scandanavian_haven January 20, 2021 5:53 PM GMT
what a charade, I'd make up a family illness and fly home, things should be ok for French
Report Angoose January 22, 2021 9:13 PM GMT
Five-time finalist Andy Murray will miss the Australian Open after a solution to find a "workable quarantine" following his positive test for coronavirus could not be found.

The 33-year-old Briton was set to fly out to Melbourne last week, but was not allowed to travel on a charter flight after being found to have Covid-19.

The former world number one had hoped to travel safely and compete as planned on the back of a negative test.

Murray said he was "gutted" not to go.

He was asymptomatic and is now out of self-isolation, but finding a way for him to travel to Australia and then going into quarantine before the tournament starts on 8 February proved too difficult.

"We've been in constant dialogue with Tennis Australia to try and find a solution which would allow some form of workable quarantine, but we couldn't make it work," said Murray.

"I want to thank everyone there for their efforts. I'm devastated not to be playing out in Australia. It's a country and tournament that I love."
Report wisewords January 22, 2021 11:53 PM GMT
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